Monday was cutdown day for the Vegas Golden Knights as they looked to get their 23-man roster ready for opening night Thursday — and for an historic regular season game outdoors next month.
Ten players were placed on waivers, the most notable being veteran defenseman Nick Holden. In addition, center Reid Duke, the franchise’s first signee, was on the list as were forward Patrick Brown, goaltender Oscar Dansk and defenseman Jake Bischoff.
Also let go were forwards Tomas Jurco, Dylan Sikura, Daniel O’Regan, Tyrell Goulbourne and defensemen Carl Dahlstrom.
The team also announced it had reassigned 11 players to the AHL Henderson Silver Knights. Among those were forward Payton Krebs, who just finished competing in the World Junior Championships for Canada and defenseman Kaedan Korczak, who also played for Canada.
The others reassigned were goalies Dylan Ferguson and Logan Thompson, defensemen Jimmy Schuldt and Brayden Pachal, and forwards Lucas Elvenes, Jake Leschyshyn, Ben Jones, Jack Dugan and Connor Corcoran.
For those who do make the final Golden Knights roster, they can plan on playing outside on Feb. 20. NHL commissioner Gary Bettman confirmed Monday that the Knights will indeed face Colorado at the Edgewood Tahoe Golf Club in a nationally televised game on NBC. The following day, Philadelphia will meet Boston at the same outdoor location.
It will be the first outdoor game in the four years of the Knights’ franchise history and the first NHL outdoor game in Nevada since the Los Angeles Kings and New York Rangers met in a preseason game at Caesars Palace in September 1991.
“The Vegas Golden Knights are extremely grateful for the opportunity to play our first ever outdoor game in beautiful Lake Tahoe, a truly majestic location for our sport to return to its roots,” Knights owner and CEO Bill Foley said in a statement. “Skating and playing hockey on ponds, lakes and canals brings back fond memories for all of us who grew up loving the game. We can’t wait.”
Holden, 33, was scheduled to make $1.7 million each of the next two seasons. The Knights were close to $1 million over the salary cap and general manager Kelly McCrimmon said prior to training camp that the team would be cap compliant by the 12th.
The Knights have depth on the blue line and Hague, second-round draft pick in 2017 has NHL experience. He appeared in 38 games last season and had a goal and 10 assists with Vegas. He has been paired in training camp with Zach Whitecloud as the team’s third defensive pairing behind Alex Pietrangelo and Brayden McNabb and Shea Theodore and Alec Martinez.
Cutting Brown loose appears to have paved a path for Gage Quinney to make the opening night roster. Quinney has had a strong training camp and can contribute as a bottom-six forward and kill penalties if needed.